- Museum number
A goat masquerade-costume. Goat's head, which has hinged lower jaw, made of wood and animal fur; remainder made of numerous cloth strips (cotton, synthetic cloth etc.) and paper streamers stitched to a cloth ground made from recycled fabrics; two metal poles.
- Production date
Height: 90 centimetres (head and neck)
Length: 140 centimetres (approx body)
- Curator's comments
- For illustration of a goat mask with similar streamers from Maramures, northern Romania, see F. Nistor, 'Iarna Maramureseana (Winter in Maramures)', Bucharest 1981, p. 28 and pp. 39-41, and 46-7. The mask was worn for the goat dance, a ritual part of the New Year's festivities to bring fertility in the coming year. By the late 19th century, the dance had become standardised across the country. Other masks - the shepherd, gypsy, woodman, devils and 'greybeards' - were introduced as part of the dance. Traditionally the head is made of wood, covered with goat's hair, the protruding lower jaw tied to the upper jaw so that is clatters up and down. The horns are usually natural horns, or made of coloured paper rolled on a wire support. For the rest of the disguise, a carpet or rug covered the whole body, with streamers, tassels and bells.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Acquisition notes
- Acquired by Sarah Posey as part of field collection in Romania between 26 December 1994 and 7 January 1995; funded by the BMS Eastern European Purchase Fund. Commissioned for the British Museum, together with a video and photographic record of the mask being made.
- Britain, Europe and Prehistory
- Registration number